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Flickr hits 6 billion photos

Flickr's 6 billionth phot, by eon60

Venerable online photo sharing site Flickr—arguably one of Yahoo’s few remaining success stories—has set a new record: earlier this week, the site marked its 6 billionth photo upload. Appropriately enough for a photography site, the image was a shot of a Montbretia flower covered in water droplets, taken by Flickr user eon60.

“Over the last 5 years uploads have been increasing 20 percent year-over-year and we love hitting a milestone like this,” wrote Kay Kremerskothen on the Flickr blog. “It’s the ability to wander through the titles, tags, geotags, camera info, groups, comments, favs, and everything else associated with the photos that make the huge collection of photos on Flickr so unique.”

The announcement comes right on the heels of the iPhone photo sharing app Instagram announcing users had uploaded 150 million images to the service.

Part of Flickr’s appeal to photographers has always been its strong user community: the site served as a form of social network for both professional and aspiring photographers long before the likes of Facebook and Twitter came along, and the depth of Flickr’s community continues to help the service distinguish itself from many competitors.

Some members of Flickr’s user community feared for the future of the service in light of Yahoo trimming back services and offerings to focus on core business—the company dropped things like Yahoo Photos and del.icio.us (among other services) in an effort to improve its bottom line, and the service has lost some high-level players. However, Yahoo hgas repeatedly indicated it continues to back Flickr.

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